WESTBROOK - James T. Koczak, of Hammock Point, Westbrook, born Oct. 9, 1938, a devoted husband and loving father, died on Wednesday, July 21, 2010, after a courageous battle with cancer.
Jim was raised in Wallingford, where he met and married his wife of 42 years, Mary Patricia "Patty" Lynch. They had been residents of Southington, for more than 30 years before moving to Westbrook.
He was born Oct. 9, 1938, son of the late Edward J. Koczak, Sr., and Helen Brouillette Koczak, of Wallingford. Jim was a graduate of Lyman Hall High School and the University of Connecticut, where he was a member of Chi Phi Fraternity. He attended graduate school at The University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and The University of New Haven. He was a graduate of the USAF Officer's Training School in Texas, served as Captain during the Vietnam War, and was a much-decorated veteran. He was awarded the HQ 7th AF National Defense Service Medal, The Vietnam Service Medal, The Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, the US Air Force Commendation Medal, the Bronze Star, and a special citation from the Republic of Vietnam for his efforts in designing security plans and systems for the defense of Southeast Asia.
After the war he joined Pratt & Whitney in 1967 as an executive trainee and later became manager of human resources for Pratt's Overhaul and Repair Facility in Cheshire. He retired from Pratt in 1993, but subsequently was director of labor relations for Black & Decker's Corbin Russwin Division in East Berlin, after which he was vice president of human resources for the Ideal Forging Corporation in Southington. Jim retired as president of Ideal Forging Corporation in 2004, and was also a member of the Board of Directors. He had been a member of the Board of Directors of the Southington YMCA and the United Way of Southington.
He is survived by his wife, Patty Lynch Koczak, of Westbrook; their daughter and son-in-law, Meg and Glenn Staubley, of Bristol; their son, Jason Lynch Koczak, of Breckenridge, Colo.; his brother, Edward J. Koczak, Jr., of La Jolla, Calif.; his sisters, Lorraine Moriarty and her husband, Daniel, of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., and Jean A. Koczak, of Encinitas, Calif.; his beloved grandsons, Connor James Staubley and Ian George Staubley; nephews, nieces and cousins.
The family extends its sincere gratitude to the staff at Middlesex Hospital and the Shoreline Clinic in Essex for their professional expertise and compassionate services.
His family will receive relatives and friends Sunday, July 25, from 3 until 7 p.m. in The Wallingford Funeral Home, 809 N. Main St. Ext., Wallingford. Funeral services will be held on Monday at 10 a.m., from The Wallingford Funeral Home when the funeral cortege will proceed to Most Holy Trinity Church where a Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Interment with military honors will be in St. John Cemetery in Wallingford. Gifts in his memory may be sent to Weiss Hospice Unit c/o Middlesex Hospital Office of Philanthropy, 28 Crescent St., Middletown, CT 06457. www.wallingfordfh.com